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Friday, May 31, 2013

Ericast 220 - Kyle is Cool

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It's the end of the month, and that means listener feedback... and that means that we get to hear from a very special new listener to the Ericast:  Kyle Kesterson, CEO of Freak'n Genius, the folks behind the YAKiT app (and the not-quite-real site that we talked about in Ericast 218 - Endorsly vs. Fanshout).

Kyle was nice enough to include his contact number, and I'm nice enough to not broadcast that to the world, but you can find him as @kylekesterson on Twitter and learn more about YAKiT at the Freak'n Genius website.

Want your own personalized Ericast shout-out, dry read, dramatic reading of your text of choice, or anything else? Just ask!  Call 206-339-3742 (a.k.a. 206-339-ERIC) and I'll provide.  I may or may not provide exactly what you asked for, but I'll provide something.  (You could also email me, eric, at but, come on; if you're asking me to say something to you, you should do it by voice...)

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Ericast 219 - An Orthodontist Extravaganza!

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This week we're drifting back into the customer service topic, with a cautionary note that I break pretty much every guideline from this week's episode of "The Audacity to Podcast" - 5 Reasons Your Podcast Audience Isn't Growing."

...but I go ahead anyway, with a discussion of my daughter's orthodontist and the exciting waterpark extravaganza at Waterpark of America... and the fact that what's more important to me is being hit up for an extra $30-something after having been repeatedly assured that our bill was paid in full.

That's not good customer service... and that kind of thing matters to real customers.

At least, it matters to weird people like me who tend to put principle ahead of pragmatism.

And while I don't "hold a grudge," I do remember things and plan for the future accordingly.  I'm not sure what overcomes financially deceptive treatment by a business, but I'm pretty sure that being given the opportunity to frolic in chlorine isn't sufficient.

Do you have any similar stories to share?  Call 206-339-3742 (a.k.a. 206-339-ERIC) or send an email to me (eric) at and let me know what good customer service means to you.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Ericast 218 - Endorsly vs. FanShout

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First of all, right up front you'll hear that I'm experimenting with "branding" the Ericast for new listeners.  Let me know what you think of that -- good, bad, confusing, accurate, waste of time, etc.  Call 206-339-ERIC (a.k.a. 206-339-3742) and leave some feedback.

Then, I get to the main topic: Paid celebrity endorsments for the average citizen.

Ordinarily I'd do a better job of getting show notes here for you, but since not a single person clicked on my Peter Brady voice change link from last time, I think I'll pass and see if anyone notices.  (That's not passive-agressive; it's simply passive.  Truth be told, I want to get out to the hot tub before I go to bed tonight.)  If you'd like to write any notes and cover things like and FanShout and Jason DeRusha's Land O' Lakes twitter contest from a couple years back, send them to me and I'll include them here.  (Digital Dan used to do that, and it was great... but I think that might have merely doubled the number of interested folks from one to two...?)

Comments or ideas?  206-339-3742 a.k.a. 206-339-ERIC, or send an email to me (eric) at  Thanks for listening!

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Ericast 217 - My Homeschooling Experience

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Someone on Facebook asked about what it was like to be homeschooled (a.k.a. "home educated") and, rather than trying to write a long-winded response, I decided to do a podcast about it. Sounds like a pretty self-motivated created act for someone who didn't go to school, doesn't it?

This episode mentions John Holt and Growing Without Schooling, which has a good Home Education FAQ, and if you just want some John Holt quotes from GoodReads you can get started there.  (I also make a reference to Brady Bunch episode "Time to Change" and, if you really need more information, you can probably figure out how to find the Peter Brady voice change video.)

By the way, have you ever wondered if anybody bothers to click on the links that you painstakingly put in your show notes, there's a way to figure that out, too.  It's that entrepreneurial home-educated spirit at work!

Anyway, the 1985 Minnesota Supreme Court case that overturned the "essentially equivalent" law (and Jeanne Newstrom's criminal prosecution and conviction under it) as unconstitutional vague is a fascinating read, in my opinion.

Questions? Comments?  Personal reflections on your own schooling?   Call 206-339-3742 (a.k.a. 206-339-ERIC) or email me (eric) at

Friday, May 03, 2013

Ericast 216 - Chad Discusses iMovie

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It's Listener Feedback Week! Again! And this time we actually catch up to the last listener feedback we had... from Chad, who explains to me that doing cutaways in iMovie 11 is actually possible.  That sends us off on tangents about the "first follower" and "leadership lessons from the dancing guy" that we discussed last fall, and then we border on a dive into the philosophy of education before I decided to stop.

How's that for an outline?

By the way, on the audio topic, I'm still using Audacity and didn't touch the levels of any of my audio at all.  No compression, no normalization, nothing.  That means, among other things, that Chad's call has audio levels that are a smidge low... but that's part of the "what does an episode sound when we do absolutely no processing" experiment.

We also mention the Podcast Answer Man (Cliff Ravenscraft) and his course which, now that I think about it, I ought to go through to see if I can pick up any tips.

And we work in the somewhat-apocryphal tale of Nina Archabal (or was it Sharon Sayles Belton?) preserving the ruins of the Washburn Mill in Minneapolis (which became the Mill City Museum).

What a ride. But would you expect anything less from the Ericast?

Comments?  Observations?  Call 206-339-3742 (a.k.a. 206-339-ERIC) or, if you're audio-phobic and want to stick with text, send an email to me (eric) at